28 October 2021

Flights Cancelled


I was due to fly on Originair to try out their new services in a couple of weeks... This sad news has just come through...

Due to the current Government restrictions for COVID-19 in Waikato we are unable to operate our services into and out of Hamilton until such time as the Waikato region is moved down to alert level 2. Due to the ongoing uncertainty of when this may occur Originair has made the difficult decision to suspend all Hamilton services until the 19th of December 2021.

27 October 2021

Great Facebook Feature

Air Napier had a great Facebook story on their Facebook page this morning. Air Napier's only regular service is the dedicated freight flight between Napier and Gisborne which runs northbound Tuesday to Saturday and southbound Monday to Friday...

 I flew on Air Napier some years ago when Wairoa was part of the schedule... photos of my flight with Air Napier can be found here... https://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2012/11/air-napiers-east-coast-express.html I'm not sure if they still carry passengers on the freight flights.

26 October 2021

PIY's new owner

If I was a betting man I would have lost this bet... I never imagined Fly My Sky's last BN Islander to be sold, ZK-PIY, going to Fieldair Engineering Limited but that who it appears as going to on the change of ownership on the aircraft register. Of course, that might not be the final destination unless it is being parted out...

PMR-NPE flights commence

Originair commenced Palmerston North-Napier services today. British Aerospace Jetstream 32 ZK-JSJ flew the inaugural flight ORIGIN 861 this morning. ORIGIN 868 from Napier to Palmerston North is due to depart at 3.00pm

In a Level 2 world the J32 would then have flown on to Hamilton connecting Hawke's Bay and the Waikato. With Hamilton in Level 3 that new route is yet to commence.

In the past Napier-Palmerston North route has been operated by a number of operators including, East Coast Airways, Union Airways, NAC, Midland Air Services, Air North, Air Central, Eagle Air, Cookson Air, United Aviation, Vincent Aviation, Air WellingtonSunair and Air Napier.

23 October 2021

SDE enters service

Barrier Air's next Cessna 208B Grand Caravan ZK-SDE entered service today, flying two return freight flights from Auckland to Great Barrier Island, BARRIER 101 and return 102 this morning and 109 and return 110 this afternoon.

Barrier Air now operate four Cessna 208B Grand Caravans. The airline connects Auckland to Kaitaia and Great Barrier Island and from December Whitianga and from North Shore to Great Barrier Island.

The airline is currently employed operating freight flights to Great Barrier Island

Cessna Grand Caravan ZK-SDE after her arrival at Auckland on 21 October 2021

Who is that masked team - the amazing Barrier Air team keeping Great Barrier Island fed and connected

A big thanks to Barrier Air for the pics

22 October 2021

Originair Resumes Napier Flights


Originair resumed flights to Napier with British Aerospace Jetstream 32 ZK-JSJ flying from Nelson to Napier as OGN 621 and the return flight OGN 654. The flights will normally operate on Fridays and Sundays. A Palmerston North-Napier-Hamilton service was due to start next week but with Hamilton in Level 3 one presumes this sector has been paused.

On the 28th of September 2018 Originair commenced services between New Plymouth and Napier. At that time the airline did not have its own operator's certificate and services were operated by air2there. This company's failure grounded Originar and Originair services ended on the weekend of the 30 November-3 December 2018. Since then the airline has gained it own operator's certificate and has gone from strength to strength despite the frustrations of Covid. 

The local newspaper, the Hawkes Bay Today, reported today's return as following...

Napier officially has a new airline in town. Nelson-based Originair touched down on the tarmac at Hawke's Bay Airport on Friday at 1pm in its first commercial flight to the region, direct from Nelson. The small airline has chartered flights to Napier in the past - including for a Ranfurly Shield match earlier this month - but has now begun operating scheduled flights in and out of the airport. That includes direct flights to Nelson and also flights to Hamilton and Palmerston North. "I am so excited to see the arrival of Originair at Hawke's Bay Airport today," Hawke's Bay Airport chief executive Stuart Ainslie said. "We are all feeling the impacts of the pandemic, particularly the aviation industry. "Making it easier for Hawke's Bay people to connect with friends and family in Nelson, Hamilton and Palmerston North helps Hawke's Bay Airport recover from those impacts but it also bolsters the people and economy of our region." The flight was welcomed with water cannons from the airport's fire service and a specially-designed cake which was cut to mark the occasion. Air New Zealand is the main airline which operates out of Hawke's Bay Airport while Jetstar stopped flying to the region in 2019. Originair chief executive Robert Inglis previously told Hawke's Bay Today there was demand for a Napier to Nelson direct service. "There are a lot of similarities between our two areas and the message we are receiving is people would like to be able to make a direct flight for a long weekend." No other airline offers a direct service between the two regions. Originair has a small fleet of 18-seat Jetstream planes and offers chartered and scheduled flights.

Originair BAe Jetstream 32 ZK-JSJ arrives at Napier on 22 October 2021.
from the Hawke's Bay Airport Facebook page

21 October 2021

It's not becoming ZK-ZEG!


UPDATED 21 October 2021

The educated speculation is no longer speculation... Listed in the CAA aircraft register changes of ownership today is ex-Fly My Sky Britten Norman Islanders, ZK-EVO which has been registered to Golden Bay Air Ltd effective on the 19th of July 2021 .

Golden Bay Air currently operates Piper PA34 Seneca ZK-ZAG, Piper PA28 Archer ZK-ZOG and Gippsland Airvan ZK-ZUG. I presume the Islander will replace the Seneca... see https://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2021/07/golden-bay-air-7-questions-for-7th-month.html

Going on Golden Bay Air's history my money is on it becoming ZK-ZEG. Either way, I am certainly looking forward to seeing the Islander appear in Golden Bay's smart livery.

And the update, Lisa Sheppard, one of Golden Bay's owners, has posted a comment,  "we will keep EVO's name (rego) to preserve her history:-)"

My profile on Golden Bay Air can be found here... http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2011/06/sun-is-shining-on-golden-bay-air.html

We still wait for a change of ownership to appear for the other two ex-Fly My Sky Islander, ZK-PIY. 

20 October 2021

Great News

This has appeared on the Bring Our Birds Home Facebook page...

It looks really exciting and it will be the second airliner saved this year by Bring Our Birds Home!

Well done!


19 October 2021

On Delivery


Delivered to Barrier Air today is Cessna Grand Caravan ZK-SDE after changing identity from ZK-MCS to ZK-SDE and being prepared for service by Flight Care in Napier. It flew from Napier to Great Barrier Island today as BARRIER 800. 

ZK-SDE at Claris today 

Auckland Seaplanes' Islanders

Thanks to AgAirNZ for these pics of the two ex-Fly My Sky BN Islanders that have now been registered to Auckland Seaplanes... The Islanders have lost their Fly My Sky titles but still have the bird 

BN Islander ZK-SFK at Ardmore on the 8th of October 2021 and in the circuit a Ardmore on the 9th 

BN Islander ZK-PIZ at Ardmore on the 13th of October 2021

16 October 2021

Auckland Seaplanes Pick Up BN Islanders


The rumours were true... Listed in the CAA aircraft register changes of ownership yesterday were two of the ex-Fly My Sky Britten Norman Islanders, ZK-SFK and ZK-PIZ, which have been registered to Auckland Seaplanes Ltd effective 2 August 2021.

Auckland Seaplanes operates DHC Beavers around the Hauraki Gulf. Auckland Seaplanes also operate Waiheke Wings which operates a Cessna 172 out of Waiheke Island, see https://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2018/12/new-operator-for-waiheke-island.html

What the Islanders will be used for remains to be seen.

Changes of ownership have yet to appear for the other two ex-Fly My Sky Islanders, ZK-EVO and ZK-PIY. It seems fairly positive that ZK-EVO will go into service with Golden Bay Air.

Pam Williams RIP


One of the founders of Air Wanganui, Pam Williams, has passed away.  She was managing director and founder of Wanganui Trawlers, which later became Wanganui Seafoods, one of New Zealand’s largest seafood companies, exporting all over the world.

She also co-founded five other businesses, including Air Wanganui​, and was a major philanthropist, giving away millions.

See : https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/126645760/obituary-pam-williams-a-fishing-tycoon-who-worked-for-whanganui

For more on Air Wanganui see : http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2019/05/air-wanganui-and-piper-mojave.html

11 October 2021

Research at Alexandra - Goldfields Air


While in Alexandra I was able to score a couple of hours at the museum to do some research on the local air services. An airline that has always had particular interest to me was Goldfields Air I have updated my post with more information and photographs.

See : http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2010/09/goldfields-air-alexandras-airline.html

10 October 2021

Pegasus Aviation - Your Own Private Airliner


The Pegasus School of Aviation was formed by Wally Christopherson in late 1966  and was licensed to operate flight training from Tauranga. Previously Wally had been the chief flying Instructor for the Tauranga Aero Club. 

Bay of Plenty Times, date unknown

A Pegasus School of Aviation Victa Airtourer ZK-CLF at Tauranga

On the 5th of September 1968 the Pegasus School of Aviation was given a licence for air charter services from Tauranga.

In late 1971 Piper PA32 Cherokee 6 ZK-DEF was subsequently added to its fleet and in mid-1972 the Pegasus School of Aviation was authorised to vary the terms of Air Service Licence 635 and operate an air taxi services from Tauranga with one five-passenger Piper PA32 Cherokee 6 and one one-passenger Airtourer 150. .

An undated photo of the Pegasus School of Aviation's Piper PA32 Cherokee 6 ZK-DEF at Blenheim's Omaka Aerodrome

In 1972 Pegasus applied for an air taxi service. Statistics given to the Ministry of Transport give a glimpse of the operations in the years ended 31 March and for 1972, 31 January;

Training Hours -  (1968) 646; (1969) 1766; (1970) 1708; (1971) 1204; (1972) 1368

Charter Hours - (1969) 59; (1970) 130; (1971) 105; (1972) 98

Scenic Flight Hours - (1969) 12; (1970) 46; (1971) 53; (1972) 78  

Piper Aztec ZK-DJG joined Pegasus' fleet in 1979. 

The Tauranga Aero Club, who had always been Pegasus School of Aviation's big competitor, bought out the company in September 1980. The training business and fleet was subsumed into the Aero Club. At this time the Tauranga Aero Club's commercial arm was known as Tauranga Aerial Charter but the Pegasus charter fleet, which included at that time Piper Cherokee 6 ZK-DEF and Piper Aztec ZK-DJG, remained separate, initially being operating as Pegasus Air Charter and later being renamed as Pegasus Aviation.

Piper Aztec ZK-DJG wearing Pegasus Air Charter titles at Tauranga

In 1984 Eagle Air doubled in size adding three Piper Navajo Chieftains and a second Embraer Bandeirante to its fleet. This enabled the company to establish a "hub and spoke" operation with Hamilton and Palmerston North being major hubs and flights timed to connect to similar timed arrivals and departure to other central North Island destinations. This timetable started on the 2nd of April 1984 and it enabled Tauranga passengers to connect at Hamilton to connecting flights to Gisborne, Napier, Wanganui, New Plymouth or Wellington. 

From mid-1984 Eagle Air chartered Pegasus Aviation to operate the Tauranga-Hamilton flights offering a much better timetable for passengers travelling to and from Tauranga. Pegasus Aviation normally used the Piper Aztec, ZK-DJG. for these flights which operated twice daily on weekdays. Pegasus Aviation continued to operate these services until the 25th of October 1985. 

Pegasus Aviation's Piper Aztec ZK-DJG at Auckland on 6 August 1984

Pegasus Aviation's Piper PA32-260 Cherokee 6 ZK-DEF at Greymouth on 20 October 1985

With the loss of the Eagle Air service Pegasus Aviation started to wind down. The Aztec was sold in February 1986 and the Piper Cherokee 6 was sold in November 1988.

Aircraft Operated Included:

AESL Airtourer Super 150
ZK-DBE (c/n A554)

Grumman American AA-5 Traveler
ZK-DIA (c/n AA5-0204)
ZK-DLH (c/n AA5-0750)

Grumman American AA-5B Tiger 
ZK-DLK (c/n AA5B-0401)

Grumman American AA-5A Cheetah
ZK-DLL (c/n AA5A-0409)

Morane Saulnier MS880B Rallye Club
ZK-CCS (c/n 5230)

Piper PA-23-250 Aztec C
ZK-DJG (c/n 27-2638)

Piper PA-28-140 Cherokee
ZK-CNK (c/n 28-21097)

Piper PA-32-260E Cherokee Six
ZK-DEF (c/n 32-7200007)

Victa Airtourer 100
ZK-CLF (c/n 121)